Chapter 36

Markhette wandered through her shop, striding past the various displays. “Now that we’re done with the jokes, I have to ask: Is there any particular kind of hidden weapon you’re looking for, or would you rather browse?”
“What in humanity’s name gave you the idea I was done with the jokes?” Conmer strolled over to a basket full of pen knives. Briefly debating purchasing a new one.
The warmest, gentlest, and all around friendliest smile Conmer had ever seen bloomed across Markhette’s face. “Now that we’re done with the jokes, I have to ask: Is there any particular kind of hidden weapon you’re looking for, or would you rather browse?”
Conmer decided to take a hint and let Markhette change the topic, a choice driven entirely by self preservation. “Well, I’ve always liked the Tyur’len line of firearms – what’s their most recent model?” He paused, glancing toward Tenra. “But first, do you have any hidden knives that would fit the kid? Preferably something that’s good for poisons.”
“…I’ll have to check. Rosearn parents aren’t super comfortable giving their kids hidden weapons around here. Something about the other species being a bad influence and glorifying violence. I know for a fact I have at least some knives in her size, but if you want a good one…”
“A very good one. I can promise you that she is familiar with handling bladed objects and toxic substances, so there are no safety concerns.”
“Well, yeah. Obviously.” Markhette glanced toward the longknife Tenra got from Genrou, then started rummaging through one of the display bins. “That’s genzin tech she’s got there. Half-size psychos don’t give that stuff out unless you’ve earned it. And you wouldn’t have specifically requested a knife that’s ‘good for poisons’ if she didn’t have at least some… knowledge… on the… Bingo!” She pulled out what looked like a leather bracer, but Conmer knew to be a hidden blade designed for being concealed under the sleeve. “It’s got a thin blade for extra piercing power, and has a special compartment that will automatically coat the blade in whatever poison you fill it with.”
Conmer gave the weapon a cursory examination, then flicked open its poison storage. He tapped Tenra’s shoulder to get her attention, then tapped on the device to get her to notice it. Almost immediately, Tenra grabbed the weapon and started enthusiastically investigating it. After about a minute, she spat a few times into its poison storage, closed its lid, strapped it on to her forearm, and then hid it with her sleeve. It seemed this wasn’t her first hidden weapon.


A note from the author ninja:

Even though the arlvere possess an unrivaled hatred for rosearn, the rosearn themselves just shrug off arlvere as a bunch of morons with guns – not something worth hating.

Genzin, on the other hand, are absolutely loathed by the rosearn. Simply because “they’re smart enough to know better.” Genzin respond to this hatred with an unrelenting apathy. An apathy best summarized by an ancient genzin general: “Cowards and traitors are found in every shadowed space. Let them have their filthy darkness, it is beneath us. Strike them down only when necessary, lest you stain your blade with impure blood.”

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